Artists use ‘alternative methods’ to create social context
Karachi: Narratives depend on memories, and memories encoded into social practices cannot be suppressed or entirely erased, despite all attempts to do just that.
Manizhe Ali, an artist, expressed these views at an exhibition titled ‘Alternative Methods’, which opened at Full Circle Gallery on Wednesday. Artworks of seven artists are on display at the show.
Ali said rituals in the Pakistani society were the focal practices of recreating and preserving memory, as well as of forming social and cultural contexts.
“Ritual in this case is an open play of chance and experiment in the printing process using photographs and texts, which is used as a mnemonic device. It adds yet another layer to memory, establishing this moment in time, in both history as well as that of the viewer, therefore creating, via the visual experience, a social context,” she said.
Along with Ali, the elite panel of the artists comprised Moshin Shafi, Sajjad Ahmed, Meher Afroz, Afshar Malik, Nurayah Sheikh and Rabya Jalil.
Shafi said he exploited his unadulterated access to the deepest emotions embedded beneath the surface only to explore the whispered secrets of dreams and long buried memories.
“I question the blurred edges between identity and the intentions of identity. I attempt to capture what I see and record their frail existence, only to return and relive.”
Shafi said the visuals combined realistic portrayals of ordinary events with elements of myth to afford him the luxury of a disconnection from the fallacies of truth. “I investigate the dark recesses of the relevant human psyche to explore a reality of ghouls and monsters,” he said.
Another artist, Sajjad Ahmed, said an event was a product of multiplicities into present and its representation. “The installation narrates through the language of art itself, the voids and fluidity at the same time, of happenings and their information,” he said.
Art critics, artists and people from different walks of life appreciated the unconventional artworks. The exhibition will continue till April 29.